Saturday, February 24, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 25

1956:  One of the great R&B records of all-time--"The Great Pretender" by the Platters, remained at #1 for the eighth week on that chart.

Friday, February 23, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 24

1956:  Police in Cleveland, Ohio invoked a 1931 ordinance barring people under the age of 18 from dancing in public unless accompanied by an adult.  
1958:  For the fourth week the Silhouettes shadowed the #1 spot on the R&B chart with "Get A Job".  
1960:  Carl Dobkins, Jr., dressed in full military attire live from Fort Dix in New Jersey, where he was serving in the national guard, appeared on The Perry Como Show on NBC-TV.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 23

1959:  Lloyd Price logged a third week at #1 on the R&B chart with "Stagger Lee".

1959:  "Stagger Lee" by Lloyd Price made it to a third week at #1 on the Singles chart.  "Donna" from the late Ritchie Valens was next with "16 Candles" from the Crests down a spot.
1963:  "Hey Paula" by Paul & Paula took over at #1 on the R&B chart.  
1963:  The Rooftop Singers stayed up there for the fifth week on the Easy Listening chart with "Walk Right In".  

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 22

1956:  A handsome singer with a great voice first was heard on the radio this week as he debuted on the chart with his first single--Elvis Presley and "Heartbreak Hotel".  And history was made.
1958:  The movie The Big Beat, an Alan Freed project starring Fats Domino, the Diamonds and the Del-Vikings, debuted in Detroit, Michigan.
1960:  Dinah Washington & Brook Benton were at #1 on the R&B chart for a third week with "Baby (You've Got What It Takes)", on the way to having one of The Top R&B Songs of All-Time*.
1960:  Percy Faith had a relatively brief climb to #1 (seven weeks) with "The Theme from 'A Summer Place'".
1962:  Elvis reigned on the U.K. chart with the double-sided "Rock-A-Hula Baby"/"Can't Help Falling In Love".
1963:  The Beatles began the Northern Music Publishing Company with Dick James.  However, the initial deal maintained that James and his partner, Charles Silver, always had one more share than John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and manager Brian Epstein combined.  This fact would have a devastating effect on Lennon and McCartney in later years. 
1963:  "Please Please Me" by the Beatles achieved #1 in the U.K.
1964:  Meet the Beatles!  was #1 on the Album chart for the second week while Introducing...the Beatles moved from 22 to 3.
1964:  The song that really got the Beach Boys' careers kick started--"Fun, Fun, Fun", moved from #69 to #27.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 21

1952:  Jerry Lee Lewis married his first wife at the age of 17.
1958:  The first Flying V guitar, by Gibson, was shipped from a factory in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
1961:  The hard-working Beatles performed three concerts in one day, their usual lunchtime gig at the Cavern Club, then at the Cassanova Club later that evening before a final show at Litherland Town Hall in Liverpool, England.
1964:  The Echoes, a new group from New York City, recruited an unknown piano player named Billy Joel.  Joel had seen the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show, and was inspired to start a rock & roll career and find a band.  (Note:  Joel's website and WINS Radio in New York City list the year as 1963, but of course the Beatles' debut appearance was in February of 1964, and Billy himself confirmed to 'Billboard' in an interview that he joined the Echoes in 1964.)


1966:  The Rascals released the single "Good Lovin'".

1966:  The Lovin' Spoonful released the single "Daydream".

1966:  The Beatles released the single "Nowhere Man".
1968:  McGraw-Hill publishing company outbid eight other competitors for the rights in the United States to Hunter Davies' authorized biography of the Beatles.  McGraw-Hill paid $150,000.

1970:  The Jackson 5 made their television debut on American Bandstand.
1970:  Simon & Garfunkel rose to #1 in the U.K. with their album Bridge Over Troubled Water.  The album went to #1 eight different times and spent a total of 41 weeks at the top.
1970:  Dionne Warwick had one of her biggest career hits with "I'll Never Fall In Love Again", which remained at #1 on the Adult chart for a third week.
1970:  Sly & the Family Stone made it three weeks at #1 on the R&B chart with "Thank You".

1970:  Elvis Presley had been recording for 15 years and on this date, "Kentucky Rain" was one of the hottest songs, moving from 96 to 40.

   And "Travelin' Band" sounds as good now as it did in 1970...

1970:  Sly & the Family Stone remained on top with "Thank You".  Eddie Holman was a surprising second with "Hey There Lonely Girl" while Simon & Garfunkel moved from 13 to 3 in just their third week with "Bridge Over Troubled Water".  The former #1 "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5 was now fourth with CCR's great double-sided hit "Travelin' Band"/"Who'll Stop The Rain" moving from 9 to 5.  The rest of an excellent Top 10:  "No Time" from the Guess Who, B.J. Thomas and his #1 classic "Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head", the Temptations remained in the #8 position with "Psychedelic Shack", the Shocking Blue's former #1 "Venus" and Brook Benton headed into the Top 10 with "Rainy Night In Georgia".
1970:  Led Zeppelin II was the top album for the sixth week, but former #1 Abbey Road by the Beatles had good staying power, remaining second.  The top new entry in the Top 10 was Chicago II, which moved from 44 to 9 in its second week.

  1973:  The Edgar Winter Group released the single "Frankenstein".

        Fleetwood Mac had kicked it up a notch for this album...

1976:  Desire by Bob Dylan was #1 for a third week on the Album chart, holding off Still Crazy After All These Years by Paul Simon, although Paul's was the better album.  Gratitude from Earth, Wind & Fire held on to third with Station to Station by David Bowie another pretender to the crown.  Chicago IX, the group's Greatest Hits package, was at #5.  The rest of the Top 10:  Peter Frampton's solo release Frampton Comes Alive! was on fire, moving from 22-6, the self-titled Fleetwood Mac, which had fallen off the chart on October 4, was back with a vengeance, moving from 15-7, ELO's new release Face the Music, Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan and Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes moved into the Top 10 with Wake Up Everybody.
1976:  The Four Seasons had the top U.K. song with "December, 1963 (Oh What A Night)".
1976:  Art Garfunkel scored a #1 on the Adult chart this week with "Break Away".
1976:  Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan moved to #1 on the R&B chart with their sweet song "Sweet Thing".

                           ELO with one of their biggest hits...

1976:  Paul Simon told of all the ways people took the easy way out with "50 Ways To Leave Your Lover", the #1 song for a third week.  Rhythm Heritage was a factor with "Theme From 'S.W.A.T.'" and Hot Chocolate was a steady third with "You Sexy Thing".  Donna Summer's "Love To Love You Baby" was next, followed by another hormone-driven song, "Love Machine" from the Miracles.  The rest of the Top 10:  Barry Manilow and "I Wrote The Songs", Eric Carmen vaulted from 14 to 7 with his first solo hit "All By Myself", Neil Sedaka was back with "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do", the Eagles' latest smash "Take It To The Limit", one of The Top 500 Songs of the Rock Era*, moved into the Top 10 and ELO remained at #10 with "Evil Woman".

1977:  The Eagles released the single "Hotel California" (Please click on "Skip Ad" after five seconds...)  (Note:  some websites naively list March 12 as the release date.  "Hotel California" debuted on the Singles chart on February 26.  It is physically impossible for a song to debut on the Singles chart if it has not been released as a single.)
1977:  Neil Diamond's live concert television special aired on NBC.

1978:  Johnny Mathis & Deniece Williams released the single "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late".
1980:  Janet Vogel of the Skyliners ("Since I Don't Have You") committed suicide at age 37.
1980:  Fleetwood Mac began a 16-show tour of Australia and New Zealand at the Entertainment Centre in Perth.  The group had kicked off their worldwide Tusk tour on October 26, 1979 at the Minidome in Pocatello, Idaho.
1981:  Prince appeared on Saturday Night Live on NBC.
1981:  Phil Collins debuted at #1 on the U.K. Album chart with Face Value.
1981:  Ronnie Milsap crossed over for a great #1 Adult Contemporary song--"Smoky Mountain Rain".

             She don't remember the Queen of Soul? You've got to be kidding!

1981:  Dolly Parton completed the climb to #1 with "9 To 5".  Eddie Rabbitt was one step away with "I Love A Rainy Night" while former #1 "Celebration" by Kool & the Gang was now third and John Lennon's posthumous release "Woman" was #4.  The rest of the Top 10:  Blondie with "The Tide Is High", REO Speedwagon's "Keep On Loving You", Styx entered the Top 10 with "The Best Of Times", Delbert McClinton with "Giving It Up For Your Love", Dan Fogelberg moved in to #9 with "Same Old Lang Syne" and Steely Dan remained in the #10 spot with "Hey Nineteen".

                                        "Tough Guys"...

1981:  REO Speedwagon, which had toiled for ten years with little success, finally was rewarded as Hi Infidelity became the #1 album.  Double Fantasy from John Lennon dropped while "The Jazz Singer" Soundtrack  by Neil Diamond remained in the #3 spot.  Pat Benatar's excellent Crimes of Passion was fourth with Styx rising a spot with Paradise Theater.  The rest of the Top 10:  the Police with Zenyatta Mondatta, Blondie's Autoamerican, Kenny Rogers' Greatest Hits captured the #8 position, AC/DC was at #9 after 27 weeks with Back In Black and Stevie Wonder closed the list with Hotter Than July.

1982:  Murray "the K" Kaufman, the disc jockey who is believed to have been the first DJ in America to play a Beatles song and who promoted the Beatles' first tour, died of cancer in Los Angeles at age 60.
1986:  Pat Boone was a guest star on The Fall Guy on ABC-TV.
1987:  Sylvester Stone (of Sly & the Family Stone) was thrown in jail on drug charges.
1987:  Bobby Rydell and Fabian appeared on The Facts of Life on NBC-TV.
1987:  Ben E. King had the new #1 song in the U.K. as "Stand By Me", which was featured in the movie of the same name, was re-released.
1987:  Lionel Richie, one of the most successful Adult Contemporary artists of all-time, remained at #1 for the third straight week with "Ballerina Girl".

1987:  The Bangles were off and running with "Walking Down Your Street"--their latest moved from 95 to 71.

                                   "Wanted Dead or Alive"...

1987:  Bon Jovi held off everyone for a seventh week at #1 on the Album chart with their breakthrough album Slippery When WetThe Way It Is from Bruce Hornsby & the Range at 4, Different Light at #5 after 56 weeks for the Bangles, Invisible Touch from Genesis at #7 and Fore!  by Huey Lewis & the News at #10 were other noteworthy albums.
1990:  Bonnie Raitt was the winner of four awards at the Grammys, including Album of the Year for Nick of Time.
1990:  In yet another blunder by the Grammy Awards, Milli Vanilli won the Best New Artist award.  It was later admitted that they were not the vocalists on the album, and their award was vacated.  (Note:  several websites report that the duo won the award on February 22.  The Grammy Awards were presented on February 21, according to the newspaper 'The New York Times'.)

1995:  Joan Osborne released the single "One Of Us".

1995:  Bruce Springsteen performed live with the E Street Band for the first time in seven years at the Tramps nightclub in New York City.
1998:  Celine Dion owned the #1 U.K. song with "My Heart Goes On", which became the world's best-selling single of the year.

                            Rob Thomas and Matchbox 20 with "' A.M.'...

1998:  Yield by Pearl Jam debuted at #2 on the Album chart.  Matchbox 20 (#6) was still in the Top 10 after 49 weeks with Yourself or Someone Like You, Savage Garden (#8) was hanging in there after 43 weeks and Will Smith entered the Top 10 with Big Wilie Style.

2001:  U2 captured Grammys for Record and Song of the Year with "Beautiful Day".
2003:  Ringo Starr started the record label Pumkinhead (correct spelling), geared towards new artists.
2004:  Charlotte Church turned 18, thus gaining control of a trust fund of her earnings that had reached $30 million.

2009:  The Fray had the #1 album with their self-titled debut.
2012:  Fun. released the album Some Nights.

Born This Day:
1933:  Nina Simone (real name Eunice Waymon) was born in Tryon, North Carolina; died of cancer in Carry le Rouet, France on April 21, 2003.
1938:  Bobby Charles ("See You Later, Alligator") was born in Abbeville, Louisiana; died January 14, 2010.

1943:  David Geffen, music industry executive, founder of Asylum Records who signed the Eagles, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne and also founder of his own Geffen Records who signed Donna Summer, Aerosmith, Toni Braxton, Mary J. Blige, Enya, Guns N' Roses, Don Henley and Sonic Youth, was born in Brooklyn, New York.  (Note:  some websites list his birthplace as Borough Park, New York, others as New York City.  Borough Park is the name of a neighborhood--neighborhoods are not official places of birth.  Geffen was born in Brooklyn, according to 'CNN'.)
1946:  Paul Newton, original bassist of Uriah Heap, was born in Andover, Hampshire, England.
1949:  Jerry Harrison, songwriter, keyboardist and guitarist of the Talking Heads, was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
1951:  Vince Welnick, keyboardist of the Tubes and the Grateful Dead, was born in Phoenix, Arizona; committed suicide in Forestville, California on June 2, 2006 after battling depression for 10 years.  (Note:  some websites list his birthday as February 22--it was February 21, according to his official website.)
1956:  Lester Hunt, songwriter and guitarist who joined the Climax Blues Band in 1985, was born in Stretford, Manchester, England.
1958:  Mary Chapin-Carpenter was born in Princeton, New Jersey.
1961:  Ranking Roger (real name Roger Charlery), vocalist of the Beat, General Public and the Fine Young Cannibals, was born in Birmingham, England.  
1967:  Michael Ward, guitarist of the Wallflowers, was born in Los Angeles.
1969:  James Dean Bradfield, lead guitarist and lead singer of the Manic Street Preachers, was born in Pontypool, Wales.
1970:  Eric Wilson, bassist of Sublime, was born in Long Beach, California.  (Note:  some websites list his birthday as February 22, and others say he was born in 1969.  There are no credible sources for any date, but our best research indicates he was born on February 21, 1970.)

1986:  Charlotte Church was born in Llandaff, Cardiff, Wales.
1989:  Corbin Bleu of High School Musical was born in Brooklyn, New York.

Monday, February 19, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 20

1949:  Ricky Nelson joined his parents, Ozzie and Harriet, on their radio show, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.
1958:  Buddy Holly released his self-titled album on Coral Records, which included "Peggy Sue" and "Rave On".
1958:  Buddy Holly & the Crickets, the Everly Brothers, Bill Haley & the Comets, Jerry Lee Lewis and Jimmie Rodgers opened up the Big Gold Record Stars Tour in Florida.
1963:  The Beatles drove all night from Liverpool to London to perform "Love Me Do" and "Please Please Me" on the live lunchtime BBC radio show Parade of the Pops, an appearance that lasted just over four minutes.  They then drove 160 miles for a concert that night at the Swimming Baths in Doncaster, Yorkshire.
1964:  The Beach Boys recorded "Don't Worry Baby".  (Note:  some websites report that the song was recorded on January 7.  Although recording for the album 'Shut Down Volume Two' began January 1-10, the group recorded "Don't Worry Baby" in the final sessions for the album on February 20, according to the book 'The Beach Boys:  The Definitive Diary of America's Greatest Band, on Stage and in the Studio' by Keith Badman.)
1964:  The Bachelors scored a #1 U.K. hit with "Diane".
1965:  One of The Top 100 Artists of the Rock Era* first appeared on the radio as the Moody Blues debuted on the chart with their first career single--"Go Now".

Sunday, February 18, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 19

1956:  Elvis Presley performed three shows (2, 5 and 8 p.m.) at the Fort Homer Hesterly Armory in Tampa, Florida.

1957:  Tab Hunter topped the U.K. chart with "Young Love", one of the great songs early in the Rock Era.
1958:  Carl Perkins left Sun Records to sign a deal with Columbia.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 18

1956:  The Platters ruled the R&B chart for the seventh week with "The Great Pretender".
1959:  Elvis Presley performed after hours at the Lido Club in Paris, France while on leave from the United States Army.
1962:  While on leave from training in the United States Marines, the Everly Brothers appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show, in full uniform and cropped hair, singing "Crying In The Rain".

Friday, February 16, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 17

1955:  Little Richard sent his first audition tape to Specialty Records.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 16

1953:  "Venus" was the name of Frankie Avalon's newest, and it rose from #99 to #53 on this date.

1959:  The Fleetwoods released the single "Come Softly To Me".

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 15

1958: The Dick Clark Show premiered on ABC-TV, with guests Pat Boone, Connie Francis, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Ray.
1959:  Bobby Vee performed his first professional concert (as the "Winter Dance Party" was unpaid), traveling with the Shadows to earn $15 each.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 14

1961:  The Beatles performed at the Cassanova Club in Liverpool, England and were captured on film for the first time.  (Note:  you will see numerous websites misspell the name of the club.  The correct spelling is with two "s's", as shown in the poster above, the Liverpool newspaper 'The Echo", and the books 'The Beatles Diary Volume 1:  The Beatles Years' by Barry Miles,  'Beatlemania:  Technology, Business, and Teen Culture in Cold War America' by AndrĂ© Millard, and 'The Beatles' Gigs:  Every Beatles' Gig from 1957 to 1970' by Robert G. Anstey.  The club was started by Brian Casser, who named it after his group Cass & the Cassanovas.)
1966:  Neil Diamond recorded the songs "Cherry Cherry" and "Solitary Man.

Monday, February 12, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 13

1961:  Frank Sinatra started his own recording company, Reprise Records.
1961:  The instrumental "Calcutta" by Lawrence Welk was the new #1 song, passing up "Will You Love Me Tomorrow" by the Shirelles.  The Miracles teamed up for the #3 song--"Shop Around", while Neil Sedaka was fourth with "Calendar Girl" and Ferrante & Teicher's big hit "Exodus" was on its way down.
1961:  The Miracles remained at #1 on the R&B chart for the fifth consecutive week with "Shop Around".
1962:  Don and Phil Everly graduated from boot camp in the Marine Corps and Don married Venetia Stevenson.
1965:  Jr. Walker & the All-Stars debuted on the chart and on the radio with their first single--"Shotgun".
1965:  The Temptations remained at #1 on the R&B chart for a third week with "My Girl".

Sunday, February 11, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 12

1956:  Dean Martin had the #1 song in the U.K. with "Memories Are Made Of This".

Saturday, February 10, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 11

1956:  Elvis Presley performed "Heartbreak Hotel" and "Blue Suede Shoes" on the television program The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show.
1956:  The Platters notched a sixth week at #1 on the R&B chart with "The Great Pretender".

Friday, February 9, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 10

1958:  Frank Sinatra moved to #1 on the Album chart with Come Fly With Me.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 9

1957:  A new star first appeared on the radio.  On this date, Johnny Mathis had his first hit "Wonderful!  Wonderful!" debut on the chart.
1957:  "Blue Monday" by Fats Domino was the top R&B song for a third week.
1959:  Frankie Avalon had to bow out of the ill-fated Winter Dance Party (that had already claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper) due to pneumonia, replaced by Paul Anka and Fabian.
1959:  "Stagger Lee" by Lloyd Price moved to #1 on the R&B chart.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 8

1956:  Buddy Holly signed a recording contract with Decca Records.
1960:  The Special House Subcommittee on Legislative Oversight opened hearings on disc jockey payola.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 7

1959:  The funeral for Buddy Holly was held at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Lubbock, Texas.  Over 1,000 mourners attended.

Monday, February 5, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 6

1960:  Jesse Belvin ("Guess Who" from 1959), who also co-wrote "Earth Angel" for the Penguins, died at age 27 in a car accident in Hope, Arkansas that also claimed the life of his wife and the driver of the car.
1961:  "Shop Around" by the Miracles was #1 on the R&B chart for a fourth week.
1964:  Tickets to see the Beatles' first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show sold out.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 5

1957:  Bill Haley was welcomed by 5,000 fans when he arrived in Southampton, England for his first tour of the U.K.
1958:  The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), which conducts the Grammy Awards, formed a chapter in New York City.
1962:  The hard-working Beatles played their usual two shows, one at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, England and the other at the Kingsway Club in Southport.  Ringo Starr sat in on drums as Pete Best was ill.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 4

1954:  The Drifters recorded "White Christmas".
1955:  Elvis Presley gave two performances (7:30 and 9:30 p.m.) at Jesuit High School in New Orleans, Louisiana.
1959:  Frankie Avalon, Fabian and Jimmy Clanton took over as the headlining acts for the Winter Dance Party after the death of Buddy Holly.
1961:  Johnny Burnette was hospitalized for an emergency appendectomy.

Friday, February 2, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 3

1958:  The Silhouettes reached #1 on the R&B chart with "Get A Job".

Thursday, February 1, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 2

1949:  RCA Records released a new smaller record with a bigger hole in the middle, called the 45 RPM.
1955:  The Coasters signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records.
1957:  Fats Domino performed "Blueberry Hill" and "Blue Monday" on The Perry Como Show on television.
1959:  Pat Boone was on the cover of Life magazine.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: February 1

1956 - The Rock and Roll Ice Revue opened at the Roxy Theater in New York City. 
1960:  Bill Black's Combo held on to #1 on the R&B chart for the fourth straight week with "Smokie - Part 2".
1960:  Johnny Preston's "Running Bear" captured the #1 spot overall for the third week.
1962:  The Beatles did a show at the Thistle Cafe in West Kirby, England, the first gig booked by manager Brian Epstein for which he took a commission (10%).

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 31

1956:  Elvis Presley signed a contract with the William Morris Agency to represent him in arrangements with movie companies.
1957:  "Rock Around The Clock" by Bill Haley & the Comets, which was a hit in Great Britain before it was re-released in the Untied States, went over a million in sales in the U.K., the first million-seller in Great Britain alone.
1961:  Bobby Darin hosted Bobby Darin and Friends on NBC, becoming the youngest person to headline a TV special.
1963:  The Beach Boys recorded "Surfin' U.S.A." and "Shut Down" at Western Recorders Studio in Hollywood, California.
1964:  Sales of "I Want To Hold Your Hand" by the Beatles had already topped 1.5 million in England alone while "She Loves You" was at 1.3 million.

Monday, January 29, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 30

1956:  Elvis Presley recorded "Blue Suede Shoes" at the RCA studios in New York City for what would be his first album.
1958:  Buddy Holly, Paul Anka, Jerry Lee Lewis & others performed at Sydney Stadium in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia on the first of a six-day tour down under.
1959:  Elvis Presley was in the U.S. Army by now, but his songs continued to do well.  The double-sided "One Night"/"I Got Stung" reached #1 in the U.K., his third #1 song.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 29

1955:  The Penguins had the first #1 R&B song of the year, "Earth Angel", and it remained in that spot for the third straight week.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 28

1956:  Elvis Presley appeared on national television for the first time on The Dorsey Brothers Stage Show on CBS, performing "Shake, Rattle And Roll," "Flip, Flop And Fly" and "I Got A Woman".  Comedian and Stage Show producer Jackie Gleason said afterward, "He can't last. I tell you flatly, he can't last."

Friday, January 26, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 27

1956:  One of the most historic days of the Rock Era--Elvis Presley released the single "Heartbreak Hotel".  RCA had just purchased Elvis's contract from Sun Records for $35,000.  It seems the investment paid off.
1958:  Little Richard entered Oakwood Theological College in Huntsville, Alabama, where he was ordained as a Seventh Day Adventist Minister.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 26

Remember that this countdown is all about the R&B chart.  There are songs that did quite well on that chart but not well on the popular chart then others that were huge hits that might have you wondering why they weren't ranked higher.  Some were popular overall but not so much on the R&B chart.  So keep that in mind as we continue to work our way upward.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 25

1958:  "Jailhouse Rock" by Elvis Presley became the first single to debut on the U.K. chart at #1.
1960:  Sam Cooke recorded "Chain Gang" at the RCA Recording Studios in New York City.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 24

1958:  The Quarrymen performed at the Cavern Club in Liverpool, England, the group's first and last performance there until they changed their name to the Beatles.

Monday, January 22, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 23

1957:  The movie Don't Knock the Rock, starring Bill Haley & the Comets and Little Richard, premiered in Australia.  Haley & his group, who were touring in Australia, attended the opening.  The movie had premiered in New York City on December 12.
1961:  All signs were that Connie Francis had a big hit.  "Where The Boys Are" moved from 90 to 42.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

This Date in Rock Music History: January 22

1959:  Buddy Holly left for Milwaukee to begin the Winter Dance Party tour.  (Note:  numerous websites say that Holly made 14 final recordings today, which cannot be true since he left early for Milwaukee, as noted above.  Holly made his last recordings ( "That's What They Say", "What To Do", "Peggy Sue Got Married," "That Makes It Tough", "Crying, Waiting Hoping" (often shown incorrectly as just "Crying"), "Learning The Game", "Wait 'Til The Sun Shines Nellie", "Drown In My Own Tears", "Maria Elena" (which is mostly Buddy's wife Maria talking and the noise of the apartment), "Dearest", "Love Is Strange", "Smoky Joe's CafĂ©"  "Buddy's Guitar", and "Slippin' And Slidin'") from December to early January alone with an acoustic guitar and an Ampex reel to reel tape recorder in his apartment in New York City.  The first two were recorded December 3, "Peggy Sue Got Married" was recorded December 5, "That Makes It Tough" was recorded December 8, "Crying, Waiting, Hoping" was recorded December 14, and "Learning The Game" was recorded on December 17.  The last eight songs were recorded sometime between January  1 and January 19, but there is no exact record, and they definitely were not recorded on December 22.  The songs were later released posthumously with dubs added and are referred to as "The Apartment Tapes".)
1960:  Sam Cooke signed with RCA Records.  (Note:  there is no definitive source that indicates the exact date Cooke signed the contract.  Although some websites say it occurred on January 21, most center on January 22, which was Cooke's 29th birthday.)

This Date in Rock Music History: January 21

1956:  It was week number three at #1 on the R&B chart for "The Great Pretender" from the Platters.  And it wasn't even close to done.

This Date in Rock Music History: January 20

1953:  Elvis Presley registered for the Selective Service System in the United States.  (Note:  numerous websites incorrectly report that Elvis received orders to report to military duty on January 20, 1958.  The only event that the date of January 20 refers to is the date Elvis registered for the draft, shortly after his 18th birthday.  On December 20, 1957, Elvis received his official draft notice.  He was able to get a deferment, then officially was inducted on March 24, 1958.  Some websites claim he received his draft notice on December 8, but it was the 20th, according to '' and the books 'Icons of Rock:  An Encyclopedia of the Legends Who Changed Music Forever' by  Scott Schinder and Andy Schwartz and Elvis for Kids:  A Biography of Elvis Presley Just for Kids!' by Sam Rogers.

1958:  An artist who would become one of the most successful in the early years of the Rock Era debuted on the chart with his first hit song on this date at the age of 18--"DeDe Dinah" Frankie Avalon.
1958:  Danny & the Juniors posted a third week at #1 on the R&B chart with "At The Hop".
1962:  Gene Chandler had a new song that was doing quite well, moving from #93 to #49 on this date--"Duke Of Earl".
1964:  The Beatles released the album Meet the Beatles in the United States, which served as their debut album in the States.

1964:  On the heels of their huge #1 "I Want To Hold Your Hand", the Beatles re-released the single "She Loves You" in the United States.
1965:  The Miracles recorded "Tracks Of My Tears".
1965:  The Rolling Stones, the Dave Clark Five, Petula Clark, Glen Campbell, the Kinks, Bobby Vee, Gerry & the Pacemakers and Bobby Sherman appeared on one heck of an episode of Shindig!  on ABC-TV.  

1965:  DJ Allan Freed, who coined the term "Rock & Roll" to describe the new music, died at the age of 43 in Palm Springs, California from uremia and cirrhosis brought on by alcoholism.

1966:  Staff Sergeant Barry Sadler released the single "The Ballad Of the Green Beret".  The song had originally been released only to the military on a small label, but when it became a big hit underground, RCA Records picked up the song and released it nationally.
1966:  Chad & Jeremy appeared on Laredo on NBC-TV.
1967:  Arthur Conley recorded "Sweet Soul Music".
1967:  Paul McCartney recorded his vocal for the Beatles' song "A Day In The Life".  He would later re-record the part on February 3.
1968:  The "Magical Mystery Tour" Soundtrack by the Beatles was the top album for a third week.  Disraeli Gears by Cream maneuvered from 15 to 7.

1968:  "Chain Of Fools" by Aretha Franklin was the new #1 on the R&B chart.
1968:  Paul Mauriat exploded from 84 to 47 with "Love Is Blue".
1968:  Jon Fred & His Playboy Band reached #1 with "Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)".
1969:  The Cowsills recorded "Hair" in New York City.
1969:  Elvis Presley recorded "In The Ghetto" at American Studios in Memphis, Tennessee.
1973:  Hot August Night by Neil Diamond entered the Top 10 on the Album chart.

1973:  Carly Simon moved to #1 on the Adult chart with "You're So Vain".
1973:  Stevie Wonder made it three weeks at #1 on the R&B chart with "Superstition".
1973:  Carly Simon had one of The Top Songs of the 70's* with "You're So Vain", #1 for a third week.  "Superstition" by Stevie Wonder was second.
1979:  Parliament's "Aqua Boogie (A Psychoalphadiscobetaaquadoloop) was #1 on the R&B chart.

     Foreigner proved they were for real with this album.

1979:  Barbra Streisand's Greatest Hits, Volume 2 was #1 for a third week on the Album chart.  Foreigner's second release, Double Vision, entered the Top 10.

1979:  "Le Freak", which had already spent three weeks at #1 before giving way to the Bee Gees' "Too Much Heaven", was back for a third time at the top for Chic.  "My Life" from Billy Joel remained third for the third week.  Olivia Newton-John entered the Top 10 with "A Little More Love" while Rod Stewart bounced from 22 to 10 with "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?"
1982:  Ozzy Osbourne bit the head off of a bat in Des Moines, Iowa and the idiot was hospitalized to undergo a series of rabies shots.

1983:  Def Leppard released their breakthrough album--Pyromania.
1985:  Andy Gibb was on Punky Brewster on NBC-TV.
1986:  Stevie Wonder and Bob Dylan performed at a Martin Luther King Day concert at the John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center in Washington, D.C.
1988:  A stellar class in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame--The Beatles, the Beach Boys, the Supremes, Bob Dylan, the Drifters and Berry Gordy, Jr., along with Les Paul, Woody Guthrie and Leadbelly.

1990:  Rod Stewart had the #1 Adult Contemporary song with "Downtown Train".
1990:  Michael Bolton reached #1 with "How Am I Supposed to Live Without You".  Technotronic was held out for another week with "Pump Up The Jam" while previous #1 "Another Day In Paradise" by Phil Collins was third.  Jody Watley moved to #4 with "Everything" and Rod Stewart had his 40th career solo hit but just his 11th Top 10 with "Downtown Train".  The rest of the Top 10:  "Rhythm Nation", the former #2 from Janet Jackson, Lou Gramm had a solo hit with "Just Between You And Me", Tom Petty crashed the list with "Free Fallin'", Seduction was up from 15-9 with "Two To Make It Right" and Tesla's "Love Song" was #10.

       A host of great tracks on 'Jagged Little Pill'...

1996:  The "Waiting to Exhale" Soundtrack moved to #1 on the Album chart.  Daydream by Mariah Carey slipped to #2 with Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill still looming.  Hootie & the Blowfish were up to #4 after 78 weeks with Cracked Rear View and the new Garth Brooks album--Fresh Horses was fifth.  The rest of the Top 10:  The Greatest Hits Collection from Alan Jackson, Shania Twain entered the list with her breakthrough album The Woman In Me, CrazySexy Cool by TLC was still strong after 60 weeks, the Smashing Pumpkins had #9 with Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness and Bush couldn't get past 10 with Sixteen Stone.

        Everything But the Girl had a huge hit on their hands...

1996:  Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men had now spent eight weeks at #1 with "One Sweet Day".  Since dropping from #1, Whitney Houston had spent eight weeks at #2 with "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)".  LL Cool J was third with "Hey Lover", Everything but the Girl moved from 10-4 with "Missing" and Deep Blue Something had their one and only hit--"Breakfast At Tiffany's".  The rest of a solid Top 10:  "Name" from the Goo Goo Dolls, TLC's "Diggin' On You", Joan Osborne found the Top 10 with "One Of Us", Coolio's monster hit "Gangsta's Paradise" was now at #9 and Madonna collected her 36th career hit with "You'll See".
1999:  Scott Weiland of the Stone Temple Pilots, who was on probation for using heroin, was arrested for failing to provide a urine sample to his live-in drug treatment center.

2002:  Sting won the Golden Globe Award in Beverly Hills, California for the Best Song from a Motion Picture--"Until", from Kate & Leopold.

2004:  Terry Balsamo, guitarist of Cold, left the group to join Evanescence.

2012:  Larry Butler, keyboardist and vocalist with the Esquires and the Gentrys ("Keep On Dancin'"), songwriter (co-wrote "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song" for B.J. Thomas) and producer for Kenny Rogers, Debbie Boone and Mac Davis, died in his sleep at the age of 69 in Pensacola, Florida.

2012:  Etta James died of leukemia at the age of 73 in Riverside, California.

Born This Day:
1922:  Ray Anthony ("Peter Gunn" from 1959) was born in Bentleyville, Pennsylvania.
1924:  Lee Pockriss, songwriter who penned three of the great songs early in the Rock Era--"Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini" for Bryan Hyland, "Catch A Falling Star" for Perry Como and "Johnny Angel" for Shelley Fabares, as well as many more songs, was born in Brooklyn, New York; died November 14, 2011 of a long illness at his home in Bridgewater, Connecticut.
1931:  Earl Grant ("The End" from 1958) was born in Idabel, Oklahoma; died June 10, 1970 in a car accident in Lordsburg, New Mexico.

1933:  Ron Townson of the 5th Dimension was born in St. Louis, Missouri; died in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 2, 2001 of renal failure after a four-year battle with kidney disease.  (Note:  some websites report he died on August 3, but it was Thursday, August 2, according to 'The New York Times' and 'Billboard'.)
1942:  Billy Powell, a founding member of the O'Jays, was born in Canton, Ohio; died May 26, 1977 of cancer in Canton.  (Note:  some websites show his birth year as 1941, and others his birthday as December 9--according to both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, Powell was born on January 20, 1942.)

  Evans on right, as one half of the duo Zager & Evans...

1943:  Rick Evans of Zager & Evans ("In The Year 2525" from 1969) was born in Lincoln, Nebraska.
1945:  Eric Stewart, guitars, keyboards and vocals for the Mindbenders ("Groovy Kind Of Love" from 1966) and 10 c.c., was born in Droylsden, Lancashire, England.
1946:  Jimmy Chambers of Londonbeat ("I've Been Thinking About You" from 1990) was born in Trinidad.


1952:  Paul Stanley (real name:  Stanley Eisen), guitarist for Kiss, was born in Manhattan, New York.
1958:  Ian Hill, founding member and bassist for Judas Priest, was born in West Bromwich, England.
1969:  Nicholas Allen Jones, lyricist and bassist of the Manic Street Preachers, was born in Woodfieldside, South Wales.  (Note:  some websites report his birthplace as Blackwood, South Wales, but Jones says he was born in Woodfieldside.) 
1971:  Gary Barlow, songwriter and pianist for Take That ("Back For Good" from 1995), solo artist ("Forever Love" from 1996), who has written songs for Donny Osmond, Charlotte Church and others, was born in Frodsham, Cheshire, England.  (Note:  some websites claim Barlow was born in Frosham; that is a misspelling; there is no such town in England as Frosham.)
1979:  Rob Bourdon, drummer of Linkin Park, was born in Calabasas, California.
1981:  Nathan Connolly, guitarist of Snow Patrol, was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland.